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Bandaging and Compression Therapy

  • Refers to the factors influencing venous return
  • Mentions the science of compression therapy and refers to Laplace's law
  • Includes useful tips for applying compression
  • Provides a tabulated summary for choosing a compression-bandage system
  • Guides on patient education

Approximately 1-2 % of people develop a chronic lower leg ulcer (Stanley et al. 2002). Although chronic lower leg ulceration occurs most commonly in older adults, it also affects a small proportion of younger adults (Hewitt et al. 2003). Approximately 55-70% of leg ulcers are due to venous hypertension (Hewitt et al. 2003; Rice 2002). The aims of treatment of venous leg ulcers are; (i) to promote the return of fluid from the tissues into the vascular and lymphatic systems; and (iI) to facilitate venous return through support of the veins (Hofman 1998). This is achieved through the application of graded compression therapy to the affected limb. This chapter focuses particularly on bandaging and compression therapy.

Contents include

  • Factors influencing venous return
  • Indications and contraindications
    • Indications for compression therapy
    • Contraindications for compression therapy
  • The science of compression therapy
    • Optimal pressures
    • Laplace's law
  • Applying compression
    • Training
    • Technique for applying compression therapy
    • Reduced compression
    • Dressings
    • Padding
  • Types of compression systems
    • Choosing a compression-therapy system
    • Four-layer bandage systems
    • Short-stretch bandages
    • Long-stretch bandages
    • Zinc-paste bandages
    • Retention bandages
  • Other therapies
    • Unna's boot
    • Intermittent pneumatic-compression therapy
    • Compression hosiery
    • Tubular bandages
  • Patient education
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Author / Editor Biographies

Nurse Practitioner Wound Management
Sue Templeton is the nurse practitioner: wound management for RDNS SA Ltd. Sue has been involved in wound management since 1987 and has extensive experience in hospital and community sectors, managing individuals with a variety of acute and chronic wounds. Sue is involved with Wounds Australia (formerly AWMA) at both a national and state level and has held several leadership positions. Sue delivers clinical care to individuals with wounds, provides clinical consultancy services, develops and delivers education to health practitioners, develops policies and tools, publishes and presents, and is...

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